The Forum of Executive Women is offering something many nonprofits only dream of — free help.
The Forum’s goal is to “leverage the power of executive women in the region to expand the impact and influence of women leaders.” It’s a nonprofit membership organization made up of hundreds of professional women in the Philadelphia area who have reached executive or other senior roles within their companies or organizations, and who have demonstrated a commitment to civic engagement.
The org is looking for a like-minded nonprofit to be its “Forum Ally” — a partnership that would allow the Forum to support the nonprofit in various ways across two years. The Forum doesn’t contribute funding to the Ally, but the relationship does have other serious benefits:
- A joint event designed to support both organization’s objectives
- Pro bono consulting services in something the Ally needs most, such as development or PR, from Forum members who are experts in that field
- Exposure for the Ally through Forum media
- Attendance for an Ally employee at Forum signature events
- Participation of an Ally employee in the Forum Mentoring Program
The Ally program began as a pilot in 2014 that was meant to last only one year. Its inaugural Ally was financial literacy nonprofit Clarifi, chosen because its work helping people move their financial lives forward aligns with the Forum’s mission of advancing women leaders, according to Peggy McCausland, Forum vice president and partner in the law firm she runs with her daughter, McCausland & McCausland LLC.
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“It turned out to be such a good relationship for both us and Clarifi that we extended the relationship to two years,” McCausland said.
From McCausland’s perspective, she said, the best aspect of the partnership was the joint event held last May, at which Forum members offered “speed mentoring” to Clarifi’s FinanciallyHers members. The practical help covered general career advice, effective networking, improving your communication skills, entrepreneurship, educational decisions and developing your personal brand. NBC10 anchor Tracy Davidson served as emcee. The event was so successful, the Forum is hosting it again this May.
Why give back like this?
McCausland, who has served on the board of a children’s social services agency for 20 years advocating for abused and neglected children, said she herself believes in the importance of giving back because so many people contributed to her own success throughout her life.
“I really don’t believe I would be where I am in life but for the people who helped me along the way,” she said.
More generally of the Forum, though, members are women who “recognize the importance of giving back to your community to make it a better place for all of us,” McCausland said.
“We’re an organization of women who have achieved a level of success in our lives, and there’s a lot of women out there who are still striving for that,” she said. “We see it as our obligation to reach out and try to help them in whatever ways we can, and this is just one small way of doing that.”
Applications are due by Tuesday, March 22.-30-
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